The coat of arms of St. Petersburg: history, description and meaning
The coat of arms is an inalienable attribute of any Russiancities. And the coat of arms of St. Petersburg in general is the oldest of all Russian heraldic symbols. It appeared even in the time of Peter I. And despite such a long period of existence and numerous changes, the symbol did not lose its original idea.
Prototype images of the coat of arms
Like many other territorial symbols, the coat of arms of the city of St. Petersburg had its "predecessors", which served as its prototypes.
The first territorial coat of arms of the province was created in1710 year. It was a banner on which was depicted a column decorated with the imperial crown. On the column - a two-handed sword and a key from the city, crossed among themselves. The coat of arms had a religious meaning, since the crossed-out key and sword symbolized the holy apostles Paul and Peter.
In 1712 another symbol arose: a glowing heart of gold under the emperor's silver mantle, adorned with a golden crown, and beneath them - a pair of palm branches. Probably, the idea of such a coat of arms is taken from the book "Symbols and emblems", which was published under Peter the Great. This symbol was depicted on the banners of the troops of the city of St. Petersburg.
The same burning heart was also used in the coat of arms of Menshikov, the founder of the St. Petersburg military regiment.
The coat of arms of Peter the Great
In 1722, St. Petersburg suffered serioustransformations. It touched his banner. Since at that time there was no official symbol of the city, Peter I founded the Herald of the King's Office and instructed them to modify the symbol.
He wanted to emphasize the capital status of the city andto denote its superiority at sea. Thus, according to the instructions of the emperor, in 1724 a new coat of arms of St. Petersburg arose. The symbol of the capital was a scarlet shield, on which were depicted sea and river anchors of silver, crossed among themselves, as well as the scepter of the power against their background.
Time for a change
Six years later Christopher Minich composed the royalherb, in which there was also a description of the coat of arms of St. Petersburg, only with some additions. Thus, over the scarlet shield, the Emperor's crown was depicted, and above the scepter an eagle with two heads. It was this version in 1730 that was approved as the emblem of St. Petersburg by Anna Ioannovna and approved by the Government Senate.
Since its official approval in 1730The coat of arms has repeatedly been subjected to changes. So, exactly fifty years later Catherine the Great decided to fix the status of the city's emblem with a personal decree. And also bring some of your changes, in particular in the form of a scarlet shield.
The middle of the 18th century was for the capital's bannerthe time of cardinal renewal. So, at this time in the Russian Empire were introduced new rules regarding the design of urban symbols. On the already existing banner appeared vertical branches of oak from gold, framing the red shield, also the Andrew's ribbon was added, and the screw of the river anchor lost one of the four blades.
In the 19th century the coat of arms of the city of St. Petersburg againhas been updated. This time, two crossed scepter and several azure ribbons were added. In this version, the coat of arms was used before the October Revolution and the fall of the emperor's power.
The coat of arms of Leningrad
After Lenin died and the city changed its nameto Leningrad, there was a need to create a new symbolism. So, from the old coat of arms all attributes of imperial power disappear, the inscription "LENINGRAD" is added. After the revolution and the transfer of power into the hands of the Bolsheviks until the collapse of the USSR, the historical coat of arms of St. Petersburg was not used. The reason for this was the symbols of the tsarist government depicted on it, which contradicted the official Soviet ideology. In addition, during the post-revolutionary period, almost no city emblems and flags were used. Instead of the emblem, a badge was used in the form of a boat on the spire of the Admiralty.
There was one more project of the symbol of Leningrad. Thus, in his book "The Emblems of the USSR," Kotseluyev cited the following variant: the white cruiser "Aurora" on the blue waves of the Neva, and in the background a red "flame of revolution" burns. However, this project was not approved. The coat of arms of Leningrad existed until the collapse of the USSR in 1991.
The modern coat of arms of St. Petersburg
In 1991, the city was returned the name, which gavehe Peter I, as well as the previously used coat of arms. So, in September of that year the government of St. Petersburg adopted and formally approved a new version of the coat of arms, which is relevant to this day.
Modern version of it is aa symbolic red shield with sea and river anchors of silver depicted on it, crossed among themselves, against the background of a gold-encrusted wand decorated with an eagle with two heads. Above the shield is the emperor's crown and azure ribbons, behind him are crossed scepters. A broad band of turquoise color flows around the shield. Less often, but still use one more option: without a crown, azure ribbons and a sceptre - this is the simplified coat of arms of St. Petersburg.
What does it mean?
Each of the elements depicted on the city's coat of arms has a profound meaning. Thus, the scarlet field of the shield symbolizes the spilled blood of the Russian people in battles with the Swedes during the Northern War.
Two anchors of silver (sea and river) sayabout the idea of Emperor Peter I, that the almighty and ideally fortified city has its exits in the river and in the sea. That is, St. Petersburg is a river and a sea port at the same time.
The scepter is an attribute of the imperial power since ancient times. A rod, crowned with an eagle with two heads, gives the city the status of the capital of the Russian state.